August 22, 2013

400 Government Jobs Gone From Region Under Napthine

Following a series of under-the-radar State Government cuts over 400 public service jobs have now been slashed in Ballarat and the Grampians region by the Napthine/Baillieu Government, said Geoff Howard MP, State Member for Ballarat East.

Across the State around 5500 Public Service jobs have gone under the Coalition State Government and more cuts are expected.

These losses have happened quietly by comparison with much-publicised job losses at key Ballarat employers such as IBM, Telstra and SEM.

The State Government buildings in Mair Street and Armstrong Street have witnessed a large number of the job cuts and corresponding cuts to the services offered to the people of our region.

There’s also a recruitment freeze in place which has meant departments are turning to labour hire and are, in effect, replacing their permanent workforce with insecure contractors.

DHS, Parks, Education, Health and DEPI (new DPI and DSE) have all been hit hard, Police have lost support staff and court services have also been affected by cuts to Clerks, Legal Aid, and Court Recorders.

Health prevention, public housing and advocacy services for our most marginal have also been slashed.

“Many of these jobs have gone through the amalgamation of Grampians Region with Barwon and Western Melbourne Regions which has seen many more services run from Footscray,” Mr Howard said.

“Sustainable Government” was launched by the Coalition Government to cut the Government’s full-time head count by 3600 public servants state-wide.

But Member for Ballarat East, Geoff Howard MP, and the Community and Public Sector Union say the figure is closer to 5500 jobs, with over 400 lost in Ballarat and the Grampians region.

The departmental efficiency dividend has now also been increased in the budget to 2.5% putting even more pressure on State Government support services already cut to the bone.

Mr Howard said the cuts were widespread and hurting Ballarat, “The direct actions of this government have seen more people out of work with less support available for people needing assistance” he said.

“They say they are committed to job creation in Ballarat, but that just doesn’t ring true when you see their record as an employer.”